By Jack Wynne – Sports Editor
Max Eaves, a pole-vaulter from Lancashire, is hoping to make the grade in time for the Olympics this summer in Brazil.
The 27-year-old, jumped 5.64m a few weeks ago, setting a new personal best, at a tournament in the Czech Republic but is still 6cm off the standard required to be in with a chance of competing at Rio.
Even though Eaves is yet to jump the Olympic standard, he feels confident about reaching the required height.
“Although I am chasing the standard which isn’t where I want to be at this stage, I have every faith in my ability.”
Max, is also training without any funding and admits it can be a struggle.
“It is really hard but every session is high quality. With funding you only have to plan one session but it’s just a case of prioritizing what is most important.”
Eaves, who won bronze at the 2010 Commonwealth Games, has competed in the pole vault event ever since he was a child.
“I started when I was 13 but it was still quite casual up to about 18. I was always very sporty as a kid.
“If I hadn’t started competing in the pole vault I would probably have done rugby.”
Max, who runs his own sports massage business, insists juggling training and work is relatively straightforward.
“When you work for yourself it is quite easy. If you work for another company it is a nightmare because I am only available for a few months of the year.”
There are less than 100 days until the Olympics start in South America this summer – the Paralympics follow a month later.